A Genius Two Partners and a Dupe Terence Hill has appeared as various characters in Spaghetti-Westerns, most of which are based on the “Trinity”-series, later fetched out into the “Nobody”- and “Lucky Luke”-characters. “Nobody” remains one of Hills most terrific (solo)-performances and it’s no big surprise that this film was billed as a “Nobody”-sequel in many countries, despite Hill playing a completely different character, namely Joe Thanks, Trinity, not so much Nobody, in all but name.
Let’s talk about the acting first: Robert Charlebois as Joe Thanks semi-Indian sidekick seems an odd choice, yet, somehow the Canadian chansonaire somehow manage to pull the role off. Miou-Miou is cute like a button, Raimund Harmsdorff is a force of nature and Patrick McGoohans performance makes you feel like clapping. As in any movie he had starred in, Klaus Kinski steals the best part – albeit, his ‘Doc Foster’ disappears, virtually blue-balled, during the first ten minutes. This would remain one of the few Kinski appearances in a comedy and Werner Herzog didn’t lie when he said, that Kinski had a very good sense of humour – just, many people don’t know how to appreciate it.
A word of warning here: many a great movie has been utterly destroyed by inept American dubbing: to mind come “Das Boot” or “Christiane F – Wir Kinder vom Bahnhof Zoo”. “A Genius, Two Friends and an Idiot” fits into this mould, the (US)-English synchronization being completely unbearable. I personally recommend the German-dub version (I believe, Kinski speaks himself), which has the right balance between straight-faced and farce.
For fans of the Bud Spencer/Terence Hill “Trinity”-Westerns and post-Bud Spencer Westerns, “A Genius, Two Friends and an Idiot” is a must-see.